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Overview

Job Duties
The apprentice will be involved in a variety of projects focused on rural community development, forest
industry workforce development, forest and watershed health, environmental justice and the well-being
of rural communities. The position involves substantial research, writing and collaboration with
community partners.

Rural Community Survey and Research (~40%): Along with providing support to the range of projects in
Sierra Institutes rural development program, the apprentice will primarily work on a rural community
decadal survey to understand issues of rural change in Westwood, a former logging company town.
Previous surveys were conducted in 1990, 2000, and 2010, and informed issues of relevance to the
community. Most of the work involves working with community partners to administer the survey,
collecting data, analyzing data, and communicating survey results.

Working with the Rural Development Team, the apprentice will primarily:
• Work with Sierra Institute supervisors and community partners in the town of Westwood, CA, to
refine survey methodology and data collection tools, including survey instrument and code
book;
• Develop a data collection protocol and work with community partners to administer the survey
to all households in the community;
• Input survey results into a database, clean data, and analyze results, including by integrating
results from previous surveys to understand change over time; and
• Communicate results, including through formal write-ups, short research briefs, and meetings
with key community members to ensure results are widely communicated and provide a
pathway to rural community development.
Rural Community Development Program Support (~20%): In addition to working on the Westwood
survey, the apprentice will have the opportunity to learn about and support other aspects of work at the
Sierra Institute, based on the apprentice’s interests and the Institute’s needs. This may include:
• Contribute to planning and implementation of community workshops that measure socioeconomic conditions in Sierra Nevada forested communities;
• Support program planning efforts centered on workforce development in forest restoration;
• Conduct outreach, project support, and assessment efforts with programs supporting forest
restoration crews working in rural areas of the state as well as with Tribally-run forestry crews;
• Draft reports on water related needs in tribal communities and under resourced communities
across the Sierra Nevada;
• Conduct background research on issues related to environmental justice and rural community
well-being, and Social Media and Marketing Support (~10%): This will include development of social media posts, visual aids for Sierra Institutes newsletter and general outreach materials using mediums like Canva to highlight and disseminate Sierra Institute program work. General Organizational Support (~10%): As a member of Sierra Institute’s professional staff, the apprentice will contribute to the organization’s overall pursuit of its mission. Responsibilities may include participating on field trips with youth, assisting with administrative duties in the main office, or other organizational support activities.

Qualifications
• Interest in environmental justice issues in rural communities;
• An undergraduate degree or other related experience in the social science, natural resources or
related field;
• Excellent written and oral communication skills;
• Experience with qualitative and/or quantitative social science research methods;
• Proficiency in Microsoft Office (Word, PowerPoint, Excel);
• A willingness to work and live in a rural, mountainous area that receives snow and ice in winter;
• A team-oriented perspective with a productive level of self-guidance and initiative;
• An ability to bring critical thinking skills, creativity, and laughter to the workplace;
• A personal vehicle for transportation outside of work;
• Experience living and/or working in a rural setting and a strong desire to learn about rural issues.
• Candidates of all backgrounds are encouraged to apply. Skills or experiences that can fill in for
desired qualifications may be considered.

The Apprentice will have a commitment to environmental stewardship and promoting economically
vibrant and equitable rural communities.

Minimum Education and Experience

Education Required: High School
Driver's License Required: Yes
Accessible by Public Transportation: No